S: Jennifer and Neil
BC: Trust in the Lord with all your heart . . . And He will direct your path Proverbs 3:5-6
FC: Neil & Jennifer
1: We are Jennifer and Neil and would like to take the time to thank you for viewing our profile. We would like to start by expressing our respect, admiration, and thanks for your courage right now. We can't imagine the feelings you have or will experience in your decision to plan an adoption for your child. We are excited that you would consider us as loving parents and we pray that this book will give you a glimpse of who we are and who we hope to be as parents.
2: Neil | Neil has light brown hair and blue eyes. He is 5ft 8 inches tall and is 40 years old. He has worked as a Restaurant Manager for the past 10 years. Some of his hobbies include bike riding, golfing, cooking, playing sports. He also enjoys leading a Fantasy football and baseball league.
3: If she returns to work part time, childcare will be provided by grandparents and church daycare. | Jennifer | Jennifer has brown hair and hazel eyes. She is 4ft 11 inches tall and is 35 years old, and has earned a Master's degree. She has worked as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor for the past six years. While at work, the child will be cared for by Jennifer's mother. Some of her hobbies include exercising, bike riding, crafts, and baking.
4: It's hard to put all that Neil is into words. I can barely remember life before him and could not imagine life without him. He is one of the smartest people I know. He can remember so much. He is very handy and can fix anything. He has been a great father and is positive no matter what the situation is. Neil is a very kind hearted and will do anything for anyone. He is a great husband and really helps out. Most of all, I love him for who he is and he stays true to that. I thank God everyday for someone who loves me for who I am, and has embraced adoption as much as I have. | It is hard to put all Daniel is into words. I can barely remember life before him and couldn't imagine life without him. Daniel is one of the smartest people I know. He can remember so much! He is very handy and can build or fix anything. One of the things that draws people to him is his quick wit and humor. He always keeps me laughing! Daniel is a godly man. He is so disciplined to spend time with God everyday and pray about what's going on in his life. Children love Daniel (or Dan-Dan as our friend's children call him). He will be a great father because of the way he loves and the knowledge he has to teach a child as they grow. | About Neil by Jennifer
5: About Jennifer by Neil | If I had to describe Jennifer in one word it would be selfless. She is always there for her family and friends. With her mom running a daycare out of the house, Jennifer has been around babies her whole life. Over the years, she has helped with the babies and treats them as her she would her own, making sure they are happy and choosing no favorites. She is very loving and good natured. Jennifer is a kind and gentle mother and could not picture anyone else for the job of mom.
6: We met seven years ago through Jennifer's cousin, Rita. Rita worked with Neil at the restaurant and thought it would be a good idea to introduce us, since we were both single. For our first date, Neil took Jennifer to a Saints game, and after the first date, I think we both knew that it would be a relationship that had the potential to progress into something wonderful. We spent as much time together as possible and really cherished the time that we had. We dated for two and a half years before getting married. We have been married for five years. | Our Story
7: Through our dating relationship, we knew early on that there were infertility issues. We feel that had it not been for these challenges, our relationship may not be as strong as it is today. From the beginning, our relationship has been based on honesty and trust. We feel these two traits are the key to having a successful and happy marriage. /In our time together, we enjoy a variety of activities together such as going to dinner and the movies, and spending time with our son and making time for family.
8: Our Marriage | Our marriage is faith based and very strong. We have known each other for seven years. In that time, our strengths include good communication and the tendency to know what the other is thinking. In our marriage, we have always worked together to get things done. We talk through all of our decisions and understand that we are partners and are continually growing as a couple. Our family goal is to raise our children to love God and bring them up in a Christian home as we were. One of the ways that our faith has grown and our marriage has been strengthened is through infertility.
9: From the beginning of our relationship, we knew infertility was present and that adoption was the only option. Through our trials of dealing with infertility early on in our relationship, we have grown in love and support for each others aspirations. For us, it was not how we had a child, that was important, but rather being able to raise a child that would be a gift.
10: When Jennifer was 19, she was diagnosed with a rare type of lymphoma. As a result of having tumors, she had to have her ovaries removed. In addition, due to fibroid tumors at a later time, Jennifer eventually had to have her uterus removed. Once her uterus was removed, adoption was the only option left to choose from. | Our reasons for adopting a child
11: Because being parents was such an important goal for us, we both embraced the idea of adopting a child. For us, it was not how we had a child that was important, but just being able to raise a child that would be a gift to us.
12: Neil and his brothers Brian and Ken | Neil's Family | Neil's family-including his mom, nieces, nephews, brothers, and sister-in-laws.
13: I grew up in a very close and loving family. My family has a great love of sports and to this day, we all love to play basketball together. While growing up, there were many kids in the neighborhood and we all enjoyed hanging out, playing sports, riding bikes, and climbing in trees. I have two older brothers and nine nieces and nephews. My mom lives in a nursing home, and I visit her at least two times per week.
14: Jennifer's Family | Jennifer with her brother Johnny and sister Jody | Jennifer's Mom and Dad | Jennifer with her grandparents
15: I grew up in a very tight knit household. All of my life, I have been surrounded by children. My mom had an in-home daycare, and most of my childhood is filled with memories of our house always being filled with people and children. In grammar school and high school I played some sports with the playground and CYO. Throughout my childhood and adult life, I have created many meaningful relationships and friendships that will last a lifetime. I have one brother and one sister, both of whom I talk to on a regular basis. I usually visit my parents twice a week, and I speak to my mother on a daily basis.
16: Above: Neils mom, nieces and nephews Reed, Abby, Terse, Stephen, Matthew, and Andrew Next page: top left-Abby and Terese, Below, left Jennifer and Elise, Right: Johnny, Antoinette, and Elise | Our Family | Elise, Ben, and Anthony | Above: Reed, Abby, Terese, Stephen, Matthew, Andrew, Neil's mom Top Right: Abby and Terse Bottom Right: Jennifer and Elise Right hand side: Johnny, Antoinette, and Elise
18: Friends and Family | Jennifer and her friend Angelle | Jennifer's family after the CCC | Aunt Inez, sister in law Michele, and Neil's mom | Elise, Jen's Dad and Mom
19: Jennifer and her college friend Lori | Neil, Ben, and our nephews, Andrew Stephen, Reed, and Matthew | Sister in law Antoinette, nephew Anthony, and cousin Danielle | Jennifer's mom, Mawmaw, Aunt Diane, sister Jody, and cousin Lori
20: Our First Adoption
21: This is a picture of Jennifer, Neil, and their son Benjamin. When we adopted our first child Ben, he was 13 days old. Having Ben has changed our lives forever. He has been such a joy to us and we have loved him from the moment he was placed in our arms as if he was our own. He is now 3 years old, and has been such a blessing. !!!
22: Parenting | We believe that the key to parenting is not how you do it, but what lessons can be learned in the process. We also feel that it is important to keep communication a key priority. We will want the child to know that they are loved by us and that we only want what is best for them. We want to be positive role models and have an open relationship that will help our child go through life respecting them and treating others with respect and dignity as well.
23: Our discipline styles would be age appropriate and we are committed to finding a way to make sure our child knows that we mean what we say and they can trust us. | We feel that it is important for a child to have boundaries, yet still understand the reasons as to why they are being disciplined. We will strive to be positive role models and have an open relationship that will help teach a child respect and understanding. | Discipline
24: sunny days | In discussing adoption with our child, we plan to be open and honest from the beginning. We plan to explain adoption in an age appropriate manner. As our child gets older and will begin to ask more questions, we will explain in more detail. If our child wishes to explore their birth parents in the later years, we will help and support them as much as we can. We would describe to your child in a respectful and loving light because of the choice you are making. Ben has a very special adoption story. He has two older birth brothers that were placed for adoption with other families. We enjoy visiting with both boys and their families and keeping in touch as often as we can. | Adoption
25: spring is here! | Baby Girl | At this point with Ben, we talk about adoption in an age appropriate manner. As he gets older, we will explain in more detail so that he understands about adoption. We are willing to answer any questions he, or any child we raise have. We feel that honesty is important and it will help give a child a sense of who they are.
26: We have one pet, a dog named Lily. We have had Lily since she was born. She is great with kids, and people in general. | Pets
27: Lily playing in the yard | Ben and Lily taking their Christmas picture
28: Before we had adopted our first child, Ben we would enjoy doing things such as going to the movies, going out to eat, visiting plantations in Louisiana, and just spending quality time together.
29: Since the adoption of our first child Ben, we now enjoy doing things as a family. We have fun doing things like playing outside, jumping on the trampoline, and going to the park or zoo.
30: We are so excited about the possibility of sharing our life with your precious child and hope this book has given you a glimpse of what that life would be like. We want you to know that our home is warm and happy and will always be a place of love and encouragement.
31: Together, will we always celebrate life . . . and we will always celebrate you. We wish you courage in the days ahead and will pray for the decisions you will make for your child. Thank you for learning more about us. Sincerely, Neil and Jennifer